A Response to No One Ever Asked Us: A Review of Children’s Experiences in Out-of-Home Care

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Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal (Vol. 24, No. 1)

In order to better understand children’s perspectives on out-of-home care, the researchers synthesized the results of 22 qualitative studies, most of which included interviews with current and former foster youth. The study highlights the insights of foster youth and what they can contribute to the development of child welfare practice, planning and policy.

Four themes emerged from the interviews: Children often feel safer in their caregivers’ homes than they did in their birth parents’ homes, but not necessarily in the new neighborhood in which they live; the strength of children’s relationships with caring adults has a positive influence on their subjective experience of safety, permanency and well-being; children often have a broader concept of family than strict legal definitions allow, and may benefit from more inclusive definitions of family; and when appropriate, children should be involved in case planning and permanency decisions. Free abstract available. (212) 460-1500, http://www.springerlink.com/content/73l617861222150j/fulltext.html.